Mass resignation of ministers in Peru: Congress analyzes how to force the departure of the president

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The officials resigned two days after being appointed by Manuel Merino, who is repudiated by thousands of protesters in the streets and by various leaders. There were two deaths due to police repression.

A barrage of resignations in Peru’s government cabinet came Saturday night after it was confirmed that two young men were killed on the second national day of protests against the new president, Manuel Merino.

The leaders of the Peruvian Congress began an emergency meeting this Sunday to seek a way out of the political crisis that they themselves unleashed when they dismissed President Martín Vizcarra six days ago and put in his place the parliamentary head Manuel Merino.

The closed-door meeting of the heads of the nine parliamentary benches was called by the new head of parliament, Luis Valdez, who affirmed that the political situation in Peru is “unsustainable.” Valdez called for the resignation of Merino, whose fate as head of the presidency seems to be cast.

So far the resignations of 13 ministers of the 18 who had been appointed two days ago: Fernando Hurtado (Agriculture); Federico Tong (Development and Social Inclusion); Fernando D’Alessio (Education); Carlos Herrera Descalzi (Energy and Mines); Patricia Teullet (Women and Vulnerable Populations); Mara Seminario (Foreign Trade and Tourism); Abel Salinas (Health); Hilda Sandoval (Housing, Construction and Sanitation); María del Carmen de Reparaz (Culture); Delia Muñoz (Justice); Gastón Rodríguez (Interior); Walter Chávez Cruz (Defense), and José Arista (Economy and Finance).

Meanwhile, the head of the Council of Ministers, Antero Flores Aráoz, assured the RPP media that I was not aware of the resignations and that he also did not know if Merino was going to leave his position.

“I have loyalty to the President of the Republic, if the President of the Republic leaves of course I’ll go with him, but I owe the President of the Republic respect, consideration and loyalty, I cannot leave him alone,” he said.

Meanwhile, on the streets of various cities in Peru thousands of protesters press for the exit of Merino. In Lima there were clashes with the security forces, and by Saturday night, two deaths were registered.

The first to be confirmed was that of a 25-year-old young man, who died before reaching the hospital from a gunshot wound to the head. Shortly after, it was learned that another 24-year-old was shot in the chest.

In addition, they reported dozens of injured in the Grau and Guillermo Almenara Emergency Hospitals.

In this regard, Amnesty International denounced in the last hours that “episodes” of “excessive and unnecessary use” of force by the Peruvian National Police in the demonstrations.

In this context, the president of the Congress, Luis Valdez, declared that this Sunday at 8 (local time) a Meeting of Spokespersons of Parliament will be held to ask Merino to resign, who assumed the presidency last Tuesday after the dismissal of Martín Vizcarra.

“These events cannot be out of the hands of the authorities, we ask for peace of mind. Tomorrow (Sunday) the political forces in the Board of Spokespersons will have to adopt the measure that is nothing more than the succession of this mandate that has to put an end to this crisis, ”Valdez told Channel N of Peru.

On the other hand, several political leaders they rose up against the violence and demanded the resignation of the president.

The recently dismissed Vizcarra said on his Twitter account: “The country will not allow the death of these courageous young people to go unpunished.”

Ollanta Humala, another former president, said: “An unsustainable government. Repression must stop. President and ministers must resign tonight. My condolences to the families of the victims.”

Jorge Muñoz, mayor of Lima, also spoke on social networks: “I deeply regret the death of a young Peruvian in today’s demonstration. Mr. Manuel Merino, resign now! Listen to the Peruvians!”

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